Birthdays, Birthdays, and more Birthdays!

June has been the month of birthdays! Between friends and family and extended family, there have been more birthdays than ever, so we have all eaten a LOT of cake and I’m pretty sure the last few pregnancy pounds of mine are solidly Birthday cake…

Daniel Tiger’s Trolley! #thingsyoudidntknowaboutbeforeparenting

Sweetest friends being excessively patient with the 2 year old’s lack of wanting to take turns…

We hosted a sweet Daniel Tiger birthday party for our crazy, newly minted two year old and it was such a hit! I think think the parents had fun too although we all sweated like crazy and I wished I had not worn makeup by the end of the day. All in all, it’s one of my favorite memories so far, and I can’t wait for more birthdays for this little man. Each one will be so special!

And then, along came my birthday and it was the best birthday that I’ve had in YEARS. We celebrated small but joyfully. Daniel bought me a cake from a bakery, dropped me off and picked me up from mass, and when I got into the car, Eliot was holding a big bouquet of flowers for me. They wrote cards that house the cutest signatures from them and then we hung out for the rest of the day with some of our closest friends who drove 4 hours to see us on my birthday!! 

And then, I had a visit from my sister and brother who came to see our new place (after a year, I guess it isn’t new anymore).

Eliot sensed the intense best hugger vibes from my brother and they stayed like this for about three minutes.

My niece helped Eliot overcome his terror of bath bubbles and they had a blast in the baby pool!

My sister’s birthday also came and went during June! Busy month!

And finally, we had Eliot’s official birthdate in which we woke him up, told him it was his birthday (he was getting quite familiar with the word birthday by this point) and laughed when his first response was “we eat cake?” We then took him for a drive an hour outside of the city to a free petting zoo where he enjoyed many goats and laughed really hard at “birdzilla” and her gobbles (a turkey). Daniel took him for ice cream that night while I got to enjoy a bit of alone time after the month’s craziness. Now I’m ready to have another birthday in June if this baby ever wants to come out…

Summertime Stories

You know that moment when you’re so pregnant that your belly sticks out below your maternity shirts and the only thing that feels remotely comfortable is your husband’s old t-shirt? And then do you know the moment that follows your putting on the shirt to discover this CLEAN garment smells like wet dog? That’s this moment. Seriously… I thought it was a fluke the first time I wore it and daniel agreed that it had a weird smell, but this is the second time, a different wash, and it smells like wet dog! I use dryer sheets with a pleasant smell that usually makes our clothes smell heavenly… tell me your laundry secrets! What detergent do you use? Are you a dryer sheet or fabric softener person? In the mean time, I’ll be over here smelling like wet dog because I’m so pregnant I’d rather smell terrible than give up the freedom of breathing, and not itching. I’m sure I’ll be panting soon anyway…

This is 36 weeks ish. I’m having such a time trying to process the fact that I’ll soon have two kiddos! I can’t believe I’m about to be a mom to a newborn again. 

Eliot got to have a visit from grandparents and has been doing puzzles non stop since they left (this is a photo of grandma and her bday gift to him). He also has been begging for horsey rides on my knee and some old nursery rhyme that my mom taught him, but I don’t know it so he always finishes the ride slightly disappointed…

In preparation for his “tiger-tastic” birthday party, we have been baking up a storm! This was his first experience baking cake. He’s almost not scared of the mixer now, but still requests to be held while it runs. 

He got his first taste of buttercream icing on his first beater to lick sweet stuff off of, and I think it was a huge success! It was 15 minutes of peace and quiet while he carefully cleaned the beater of all its icing!

We are hosting a small daniel tiger themed party with a piñata, pool time, and his best little buddies, so I drew a big mural on the wall of our courtyard which he adores already. “TROLLEY! DAN TIGAAA!” The party is tomorrow and I’m pretty excited for him. 

Daniel has been taking Eliot to the splash pad during my mom meets and they have a blast running through the sprinklers! Look at this big kid!

We finally got our fence fixed so the neighbors dog cannot climb the tree and present herself in our yard! And she can’t gnaw the boards down anymore either. It’s been so nice to have an accessible backyard again! Don’t mind the dirty windows. I always wash windows when hardcore nesting before giving birth. The living room ones are done now and I’m sure these will get washed in a day or two. Daniel and I joke that this is catholic housecleaning. Two years ago, I washed windows, nesting. Here I am two years later doing it again. 😉 

My First Peg Doll Swap

Yesterday, the mom’s group at my church pulled off a very successful Saints Peg Doll Swap! It’s been months in the making, lots of organizing, painting, and crafting with a total of 15 moms participating. Using the ideas and simple instructions from Catholic Icing, most of us met together at a home to chat and exchange peg dolls. I had a blast getting to meet new moms, helping to organize it, and catching up with friends! I really hope to do another one soon. 

Depending upon how many events we have coming up in the Mom’s Ministry at church, perhaps around Christmas. I am hoping that if we organize another one, I can spend a bit more prep time coming up with things like coloring sheets of those particular saints for the kids at the swap meet and having some quotes and prayers to send home with the moms. Maybe a little swag bag of sorts! Being a few weeks out from labor, I feel like I did about as much as I could for the meet this time without completely neglecting my other duties and family. As it was, finishing up RCIA, joining the leadership team in the Mother’s Ministry, and organizing the swap was a bit ambitious. Within one week, I attended two leadership meetings (one was for my specific committee and one was for all of the committees together), attended the end of the year RCIA celebration, and helped to host the swap. I practically took daniel to work daily and got really good at keeping the toddler awake in the car. It’s going to be a wonderful year though, and I’m really excited to be helping the church in this way!

Every mom picked up 15 unpainted dolls, chose the Saint they wanted to paint, and assembly-line style painted them. We spent two months with them (although I think most of us painted them last minute. I know of several of us who were varnishing the dolls at ten pm the night before the exchange). When we came together, we had 15 saints to swap to be able to take home a collection.

The cast of Saints!

I painted Saint Paul the Apostle. They were finished two days before the swap when daniel took Eliot to the splash park so that I could work in peace without the theme song to Daniel Tiger stuck in my head. 

I hardly had time to snap photos after the swap before the toddler happily claimed the set and he has been lining them up sweetly in different places around the house. I love the one of Mary so much (how beautifully detailed she is) and it has already proven quite useful as a visual aid! We talk about Jesus and Mary a lot, and we have crucifixes in practically every room, so Eliot really gets it when we say our goodnight Jesus and Mary prayer, at least about Jesus. But ever since we gave him the Mary peg, he has actually been saying “Mary” and seems to have a better grasp on the Mother of Jesus thing. 

If you were on the fence about peg doll swaps, don’t be! It was a blast and everyone should do it if they enjoy crafting!